Miami-Dade County is embarking on infrastructure projects that could total $20 billion as part of a push to protect the region from climate change.
Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez spoke to Bloomberg about the county’s plan for a $10 billion water and sewer project that is the largest public works project in the county’s history. It’s expected to take 15 to 20 years, he said. The county is also planning a multibillion-dollar investment in transportation that could reach $10 billion in the same amount of time.
In addition, the county is “looking much, much deeper into public-private partnerships” as a way to finance infrastructure improvements, Gimenez said, citing the roughly $1 billion PortMiami tunnel project as an example.
The Miami-Dade mayor added that he would welcome federal money for these projects, but that it can slow it down.
“It all depends on how long you have to wait,” he said. “Is it really worth the effort to try to get the federal money or do you want to get it done much faster? Can the private sector take the place of the federal government in a sense?”
The county is also plans to invest hundreds of millions of dollars into affordable housing over the next 10 years because “that’s also becoming an issue here in Miami-Dade,” Gimenez added.
Miami ranked as the most rent-burdened city in the U.S., according to a recent Freddie Mac report. The median renter in Miami spends 41 percent of pre-tax income on rent, the report found. [Bloomberg] — Katherine Kallergis